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Calvin-Parents E-Newsletter: February 16, 2010

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Cold Knight Club jumpers

The weekend was a busy time for students and alumni.  In addition to the various events for uKnight week, the replacement to winter Homecoming, the students, faculty and staff were having their own fun with the Cold Knight Club on Friday featuring first-time jumpers President Byker, all the vice presidents, Chaplain Hulst and a few other familiar faces as part of a fundraising effort to purchase a well for a school in UgandaSee the photo gallery, a video of the pledge and famous jumpers, and the Facebook photos page.

All those who participate in the jump for four years become a member of the Golden Towelers and can join the Golden Towlers Facebook group.  Each jumper receives a Golden Towel and has their names engraved on a towel displayed in the alumni office.  Read more history here.

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Exemplary teaching by Prof. Vanden Bosch

Also over the weekend, the Board of Trustees named the recipient for the Presidential Award for Exemplary Teaching.  English professor James Vanden Bosch is the 2010 recipient of Calvin's highest teaching honor and joins a distinguished list of excellent teachers at Calvin College.

English professor Gary Schmidt wrote: “I think that every rational person on the globe must acknowledge this: That a teacher who can make a course in grammar one of the most sought-after courses in a department … has done something remarkable. Jim has done this.”

Professor Vanden Bosch recently completed a three-year term as chair of the English department. He regularly teaches short courses at the Russian American Christian University in Moscow, Russia, and in the summer of 2007, he taught a grammar review course to Chinese teachers of English in Lintong, China. When he is not making the world a better place for linguists and grammarians, he serves as a columnist for the Calvin College Spark, taking on the persona of "Anonymous Bosch."  This is the most recent Anonymous Bosch article on John Calvin, Abraham Lincoln and Charles Darwin.

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ReCommend Calvin, round 3

"Every year one of my English professors would invite students who couldn't go home for Thanksgiving to come to his house for dinner. Sometimes I wished I didn't have anywhere to go just so I could take him up on the offer!"

"I didn't know anyone when I came to Calvin but quickly formed friendship with some girls on my floor. Eight years later they are still my closest and dearest friends."

"When I took an interim off to live and work with a missionary in Haiti, I ran into another Calvin student doing the same thing. It was astounding to be so far from campus and so close at the same time."

These are some of the stories that have been told during the ReCommend campaign.  We are now on the next phase of ReCommend, this time for alumni.  Help us recruit students to the school you love! Talk to high school students, parents, guidance counselors, pastors—even students already admitted to Calvin. Tell your Calvin story, and let us know who you're talking to by April 15 and get a chance to win gift cards to the campus store and!

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Scholarship opportunities

Current students have been informed of the opportunity to apply for named and departmental scholarships for 2010-2011. These "named" scholarships are established by donors for students who meet specific eligibility criteria, often based on factors such as academic major, intended career goal, GPA, minority status, etc. Students can access an online search tool to assist with this process. The application form for upperclass named scholarships, and for nursing, education, engineering, chemistry, biology, geology, science division, math, computer science and business scholarships are all available on-line. All current students who will be attending Calvin next year are encourage to apply! Students can access and complete the application on KnightVision: KnightVision> My Resources> Student Scholarships and Financial Aid>Upperclass Named Scholarship Application.

A number of other scholarships are awarded to students in particular academic departments. Applications for these scholarships are available from, and must be submitted to, the academic department for which the scholarship is designated. The application for most of these scholarships needs to be completed and submitted by March 1.  Contact the scholarships & financial aid office with questions.

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Cool Web resources

Did you see the Calvin Facebook page last week for an inspiring video of Calvin student Matt DeVlieger back on the tennis court after a diving accident in December?  How about the video of the construction of the Fine Arts Center (soon to be the Covenant Fine Arts Center)?

Here are other cool resources for Calvin ...

Vimeo - Calvin | Alumni
Twitter - Calvin | Alumni | Calvin News | Knights
Facebook - Calvin | Alumni | Admissions
LinkedIn - Calvin | Alumni

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Siblings Weekend

Movies, concerts, open gym, swimming, foosball, ping pong, tie-dye, face-painting, karaoke, snacks...and more!  Mark your calendar for the Siblings Weekend on February 26-28, which provides your Calvin student an opportunity to share the Calvin experience, along with the activities listed above, with a younger sibling, cousin, family friend, etc. The cost is $22 per guest, which includes meals in the dining halls and admission to fun activities and events planned for  Siblings Weekend.  For additional information, visit the Siblings Weekend site which is the only way to register and pay. 

Older siblings (grades 10-12) should note that Siblings Weekend 2010 is also a Fridays at Calvin visit weekend.

Rangeela is a tradition for Siblings Weekend. TIckets are on sale now!

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The Festival of Faith & Writing (FFW) will take place at Calvin from April 15 to 17, 2010. Presenters will include Eugene Peterson, Mary Karr, Wally Lamb, Kate DiCamillo, Richard Rodriguez, Stephanie Kallos, Parker Palmer, Luci Shaw, and Stephen Carter, among many others. For a complete list of presenter and the schedule of events, visit the FFW site. Online registration is available at Please feel free to contact us at if we can assist you with your registration in any way. Please note that there are scholarships offered by the Calvin Alumni Associaton for recent alumni.

If you want to prepare for the FFW by reading some of the books from presenters who will be at FFW, visit the Festival Favorites page.  There is also a Recommended Reading page with a list of recommended books from all the presenters.

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Spring tours, summer camps

Three music ensembles will be on tour this spring.

Come get your CAMP ON at Calvin this summer, where the joys of learning are nurtured within a strong community of caring staff and young learners! Learn more about summer camps at Calvin by visiting and watching the video.
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Swimming success

The Calvin women’s swimming and diving team captured its sixth consecutive MIAA title including its eighth overall by finishing with a three-day total of 939 points at the MIAA Swimming and Diving Championships at Calvin’s Venema Aquatic Center. The final total by the Calvin women is an MIAA Championships record point total and was more than 200 points ahead of runner-up Hope. At the conclusion of the meet, Calvin senior Maggie Vail was named the MIAA’s Most Valuable Swimmer.

Read more sports headlines on the sports site, subscribe to the RSS feed, watch or listen live, or sign up for the Daily Sports Update.

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Student treats for...anytime

The Student Treats program sends treats and goodies to students for a birthday, special event or as an "anytime" surprise to remind your student of your love and support.  Here are the fun options you have anytime of the school year:
  • Birthday Treat: Cake or brownie, paper products, birthday card.
  • Hugs from Home: Insulated lunch bag, balloons, thoughtful treats.
  • Pizza and a Movie: Large pizza, movie gift card, popcorn. 
Find out more on the Student Treats site.

Check the Parent Calendar for important dates

Bookmark the Parent Calendar page to keep track of important dates throughout the year, including:

Feb. 26-28: Siblings Weekend
Mar. 1:  U.S. Financial Aid application due (returning students); Calvin named scholarship applications due, most department scholarships are also due;  miscellaneous charges payment due (1st of each month)
Mar. 3:  Last day to drop first-half semester courses; Last day to change first-half semester courses from credit to audit; Last day to request a tutor from SAS
Mar. 10:  Last day to obtain refund for full semester course withdrawls/drops
Mar. 16:  Tuition, room & board payment due
Mar. 19:  Spring break begins 5 p.m.; residence halls close at 10 a.m. on March 20; First half semester courses end
Mar. 29:  Spring break ends 8 a.m.; residence halls open at 12 noon on March 28; Second-half semester courses begin


Feb. 12 - Mar. 20: Center Art Gallery exhibition: "Alumni Ceramics Competition"
Feb. 18
: Noontime Series: "A Virtual Tour of ArtPrize"
Feb. 19: Henry Institute Lecture: Lewis Daly on "God and Government: Abraham Kuyper, Pope Leo XIII and George W. Bush Confront the Social Problem"
Feb. 19 & 20: Silent Retreat sponsored by campus ministries
Feb. 20: River City Improv
Feb. 26: Rangeela 2010 - tickets on sale now!
Feb. 26 & 27: Alumni Choir in Cincinnati
Mar. 4: Noontime Series: "The State of Grand Rapids: Its Challenges and Its Future" - Mayor George Heartwell
Mar. 11: Dr. Robert Schuller to speak
Mar. 13: The Artist Series - James Buswell Trio

You may want to bookmark the alumni events calendar to keep track of important dates throughout the year, to which you are warmly invited, as a parent, alumni and/or friend of the college.

Calvin Sports: This week's athletic events

Calvin KnightsFor information about athletic events visit the redesigned Sports Information Web site. Need Calvin sports results fast? Call the Calvin sports hotline at 616-526-6522 for current sports updates. You can also sign up for the Calvin Sports-Report, a free e-mail bulletin notifying Calvin sports fans of current sports news.

Other Helpful Links:
Parent & Family Resources
Parent Calendar
Worship & Discipleship
Campus News
Daily Sports Update
Roving WebCam Click for the weather forecast at Calvin